What happens during an ischemic stroke?

Dr. Steven A. Meyers, MD
Diagnostic Radiologist

During an ischemic stroke a blood vessel supplying blood to the brain becomes blocked. This leads to the death of brain cells due to lack of oxygen. The most common cause of an ischemic stroke is narrowing of the arteries (atherosclerosis). Blood clots can also form inside the heart, on heart valves, or in the large neck arteries. These blood clots can break off and travel to the brain causing a stroke. Less common causes include a variety of blood disorders leading to abnormal blood clotting (hypercoagulable states) and blood vessel trauma.

Continue Learning about Ischemic Stroke

Can I have an ischemic stoke more than once?
Sigma NursingSigma Nursing
Individuals who have had an ischemic stroke (cerebral infarction) can have this stroke more than onc...
More Answers
How do other illnesses affect an ischemic stroke?
Honor Society of Nursing (STTI)Honor Society of Nursing (STTI)
People who smoke, have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or diabetes are at a higher risk f...
More Answers
How can I prevent an embolic stroke?
Dr. Natalia S. Rost, MDDr. Natalia S. Rost, MD
The following suggestions can help prevent an embolic stroke: People with atrial fibrillation (a ...
More Answers
How common are ischemic strokes?
Honor Society of Nursing (STTI)Honor Society of Nursing (STTI)
Strokes, including ischemic strokes, are the fifth leading cause of death in the United States. Abou...
More Answers

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.